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Stuffed Cabbage (Halupke)


1 medium head green cabbage
¾ cup long-grain white rice
2 medium onions, chopped
1½ pounds extra-lean ground beef *
1 egg, beaten
2 Tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
1½ teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 cans (15 ounces each) tomato sauce
2 Tablespoons dark brown sugar
2 Tablespoons fresh lemon juice

In a large pot with enough boiling water to cover, cook the whole cabbage for 5 minues. Using tongs, remove the cabbage from the water and pull off and reserve the outer leaves that can be separated easily. Return the remaining head of cabbage to the boiling water and cook 3 more minutes. Remove the cabbage and separate all the remaining leaves. Set them on a clean kitchen towel to drain and cool.

In a medium saucepan, bring 2 quarts of salted water to a boil. Add the rice and boil 10 minutes; drain. The rice will be very firm and undercooked. Transfer to a medium bowl and set aside.

Preheat the oven to 300° F.

In a large nonstick skillet coated with nonstick cooking spray, cook the onion with 2 tablespoons water over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until the water evaporates and the onion becomes tender and translucent, 7 to 10 minutes. Do no let the onions brown.

Add the sautéed onions, ground beef, egg, parsley, salt, and pepper to the rice and blend well. Place about 3 tablespoons of the meat and rice stuffing in the center of each cabbage leaf. Fold over the 2 sides and then roll up the cabbage like a burrito. Fasten with a wooden toothpick.

Place the stuffed cabbage rolls in a 9- by 12-inch baking dish, toothpick side down. Combine the tomato sauce with the brown sugar, lemon juice, and 2 tablespoons water and pour over the cabbage. Cover the baking dish with aluminum foil and bake for 2 hours. Uncover, raise the oven temperature to 350° F and bake for 30 minutes longer.

Makes 6 servings.

* Nutrition facts and Weight Watchers points are based on 95% lean ground beef.